Chief justice reminds Senators of constitutional duties in first ever speech

Published November 3, 2015
Anwar Zaheer Jamali became the first ever serving chief justice to address the Senate. ─ DawnNews screengrab
Anwar Zaheer Jamali became the first ever serving chief justice to address the Senate. ─ DawnNews screengrab

ISLAMABAD: Chief Justice of Pakistan (CJP) Anwar Zaheer Jamali addressed the Upper House on Tuesday and reminded the Senators of their constitutional duties.

"The lawmakers elected by people should work towards bridging the gap between state institutions and the general populace," Jamali told the Senators.

The chief justice said that the Constitution of Pakistan gives equal rights to all citizens of the state and the dream of a welfare state with a strong government will only come true if legislators too respect the law they expect the public to obey.

"The preamble of the Constitution clearly states that sovereignty belongs to Almighty Allah alone, and the political power rests with the people of Pakistan who elect you to exercise it on their behalf, which is a sacred trust," the CJP reminded the House.

Jamali maintained that Law and Justice Commission has already presented its recommendations in the light of the Article 37 of the Constitution and this speech is just a continuation of efforts of the commission for the promotion of social justice, a constitutional responsibility.

Related: ‘Govt should ensure implementation of law’

"We all agree on constitution and upholding the laws of land and in some departments, we have more laws than we need but the real test lies in their implementation which sadly, is absent in many departments", said the CJP

"Laws, no matter how well prepared, are of no use when their implementation is neglected."

The chief justice maintained that we have no mechanism to determine the quality of our performance other than people's complaints.

In case of unrest among public and lack of responsibility among lawmakers, it becomes the responsibility of judiciary to intervene and play its role in administrative reforms, he added.

CJP Jamali after today's address became the first serving chief justice to address Senate in the history of Pakistan.

The Upper House transformed itself into a committee for CJP's address on judicial reforms.

Senate Chairman Raza Rabbani had invited the CJP as a part of of ‘intra-institutional dialogue’ after attending a ceremony on the invitation of Supreme Court judges.

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